Comments

  1. Marlin Bynum says

    I was at the public forum last night and Chief Halstead seemed much more open to moving forward. I still call upon everyone that was present to contact the Police Department (817-392-4270) and let them know what you saw. I truly believe they want the truth.

    Also there was a statement released last night by the Texas Alcoholic Beverages Commission about the incident, which the chief read from. I tried to get a copy of this release but was told: The Chief of Police read an excerpt from a draft of a press release that should be finalized and distributed tomorrow, and posted on our website. I will add your e-mail address to our distribution list, and make sure you receive a copy as soon as it is released.

    Carolyn Beck
    Public Information Officer

    The chief said he would like to have a GLBTQ liason officer and hoped that someone would volunteer for that position soon.

    Please also listen to the comments from the forum from last night that were recorded by a friend who was at the forum: http://tinyurl.com/lh3xqb

    I agree the chief is making some major mistake in this. I don’t think he is culturally aware of the offensiveness of the things he is saying. He is in a mode of defense and we need to work in a mode where we can work together. It is time to change the whole tenor of this discussion or we will never move forward.

    We have a right to be angry. I am very angry. I spent twenty years in he closet because of crap like this. But I know that there comes a time when we have to sit down with our enemies and try to at least find peace. Let’s keep up the pressure. But lets also give them time to try and find some answers and find a solution.

    If they don’t find a solution then I say lets increase the pressure. If we feel that there were civil rights violations then lets get those kinds of lawyers in here to bring pressure. But let’s not just make this a screaming match. Let’s make this a dialogue.

  2. Acronym Jim says

    Based on the level of gay panic implicit in Chief Halstead’s defense of the actions of the officers, I’m surprised he didn’t change his name long ago.

  3. tikihead says

    They only care because they are in the glare of the media — less attention would mean a MUCH different answer.

  4. woodroad34 says

    Let’s see….the vice squad enters a bordello and one of the prostitutes touches him inappropriately (because, what, he’s a fundamentalist christian or something) and he beats the crap out of her — sending her to the hospital with a brain injury. Boy is she lucky to be alive after that. She should know better.

    Yeah, I don’t see that happening. What I do see happening is a multi-million dollar lawsuit, a termination or recall of this police chief and a firing of those involved in the raid…oh, wait, it’s Bush Territory–no brains needed.

  5. zeddy says

    LOL @Marlin “Welcome to Boystown Mr. Halstead…”

    Seriously, so when can we do “gaybash panic” and shoot someone coming right towards us we think are going to gaybash us?

  6. Bosie says

    Well, I’m not their little faggot…and I’M NOT SCARED of the cops…SO COME on people stand up. IF this ever happens in CA…I swear I’ll be the 1st to jump on the officer and beat the shit out of them/him…doesn’t matter how injured I get…IF one of my brothers/sisters go down I’LL GO DOWN with them too.

    I HOPE justice comes through…IF NOT WATCH OUT!

  7. Jim Shoup says

    As far as I am concerned this department needs to be under federal investigation. To start with what was he purpose in raiding this bar. Second of all; what justifies this level of violence.

  8. Marlin Bynum says

    Zeddy,

    I have jokingly said a similar thing on my facebook page.

    The next time a woman touches me I will have a heterophobia attack and see what happens. The only time that I have ever kissed a woman, it was out of the blue. If only I would have thought to have a heterophobia attack.

    I do believe that this was gay panic. I do believe it was an over-reaction. But I also believe that until all the evidence is on the table we won’t be able to hold the officers/departments/agencies responsible.

    This can be a great opportunity for the Texas GLBTQ community to move our agenda forward. We need to educate people more and more. The ignorance about gay people is overwhelming.

    As I said, I spend twenty years in the closet because of this kind of homophobia. I even bought into it myself, as a gay man. It takes time to change. The first time I went into a gay bar, it was with a homophobic mind set. It has taken me a great deal of time of self-education to realize how ignorant I was.

    So gay men and women of Texas, this is our time. Come out Come out wherever you are. Tell your freinds and family. Stand up for your gay family in whatever community you live in. It is scary as hell, I can promise you, but in the end you will feel better about yourself.

    I lost my career by coming out, but I don’t regret it for that. I love holding people to the fire now, when they do homophobic things. Move the agenda forward.

  9. alguien says

    what’s with all the freakin’ candle light vigils? it’s time to kick some ass. candle light vigils are for pussies.

  10. MikeMick says

    Forget what I said about Bull Connor. At least he was up front about what he did. Halstead is a fucking liar, a homophobic bigot and an assdrooling swine. Like the timing of the raid was a coincidence. Yahoo asshat, get real. We’d have to be as dumb as you to believe that.

  11. ricardo says

    dear andy….
    the sad part — after years of reading your blog — in consideration of an equal amount of time on the road, is the account of gay men supporting a certain form of theater that has ultimately not culminated in something that i find very impressive taking into account the supposed world class educational and arts institutions. reducing the caliber of much through a scripted facade — i am more mildly entertained than informed in certain cases. that is the degree by which the integrity of new media has been compromised in some circles. due to the fact that i have observed the queer community humored by the violent acts in other circumstances rather than stepping up to the plate in san francisco, los angeles, new york, and perhaps other locations — it begs the question, to what degree do you find yourselves complicit in hindering a much larger progression beyond happy hour gluttony??

    thank you.

  12. Mike in the Tundra says

    Gay panic? I’ve had women put the moves on me. Was I wrong not to beat them up and claim straight panic?

  13. Marlin Bynum says

    Alguen said “what’s with all the freakin’ candle light vigils? it’s time to kick some ass. candle light vigils are for pussies.”

    Well we had a protest march in Dallas on Sunday afternoon (not directly caused by this but it was mentioned). Then there was a protest on the steps of the Tarrant County Court House (Fort Worth is the county seat). Then some of us went to the public forum last evening to speak to the police about the situation.

    The candlelight is in support of Chad. We are continuing to set up events. Gay Liberaction as a milk box event coming up in Sundance and several of us plan to attend the next city council meeting.

    I don’t even live in Fort Worth but I am trying to help support our community. I agree we need to stand up. But I don’t think you are being fair to the community to act like we are not doing something.

  14. tooboot says

    Texas is known for it’s hillbilly, redneck, hick law enforcement, that’s why I couldn’t wait to get the fuck outa there, but this is 2009 and there is no longer any room for this kind of selective ignorance. They know better given all that has come before. They did this deliberately to harass and attack people they do not like or agree with. It is no different than a lynch mob.

  15. crispy says

    Ricardo,
    I loved you in The Matrix 2. That scene where you explained the history of the matrix blew my mind.

  16. CJS says

    Olbermann made Abbott the worst person in the world last night, and said all of the FWPD would remain there until they did something about Abbott.

  17. gregorybrown says

    Didn’t these cops get any training in handling stressful situations? Grabass and crotch caressing are certainly not the brightest things to do when you’re in the midst of a raid, but the level of response says a bunch about what to expect if the local police are ever faced with a REAL confrontation–a riot with people shooting at them, throwing rocks or gasoline bombs.

  18. John M says

    So, if it was just TABC would they like to explain that photo showing a FW police officer hold him down and the bloody give shown of another officer when the two TABC agents that were present at the raid are clearly shown in the photo?

    It seems pretty obvious to me that at very least two FW police officers were involved in the detainment, but I only have a photo to go by and the police chief has the word of officers that left the victim with a brain injury.

  19. Reggie says

    Sad to say, this is in Texas, the same people who not only gave us bush, but think he is intelligent. That is why it is called Tex-ASS.

  20. Marlin Bynum says

    Below you will find the TABC press release.

    For Immediate Release

    July 1, 2009

    TABC and FWPD Joint Inspections Result in Multiple Arrests

    In the early morning hours of Sunday, June 29, 2009, Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) agents and officers from the Fort Worth Police Department, conducted joint inspections of three TABC-licensed locations in Fort Worth to ensure compliance with state alcoholic beverage laws and local ordinances: The Rosedale Saloon located at 150 W. Rosedale, Cowboy Palace located at 160 W. Rosedale, and the Rainbow Lounge located at 651 S. Jennings.

    The Fort Worth Police Department arrested 15 individuals for public intoxication, including nine males at the Rosedale Saloon and the adjacent Cowboy Palace, one male at an unlicensed location, and four males and one female at the Rainbow Lounge.

    At the Rainbow Lounge, TABC agents placed one individual under arrest, Chad Gibson who was injured while in the agents’ custody. Mr. Gibson was released to paramedics for treatment of alcohol poisoning and a head injury and transported to a local hospital.

    “We are saddened that this incident occurred and extend our sincere hope that Mr. Gibson recovers quickly,” said TABC Administrator Alan Steen. “I have initiated an internal affairs investigation to answer questions about how these locations were chosen, to review the agents’ actions, and specifically to establish the facts surrounding Mr. Gibson’s injury.”

    Anyone who witnessed employee misconduct is asked to contact Lt. Andy Pena, Acting Director of the Office of Professional Responsibility, at opr@tabc.state.tx.us or call 512-206-3405. Information about how to file a complaint against a TABC employee, and about agency policy on employee investigations, can be found on TABC’s website at http://www.tabc.state.tx.us.

    “I take seriously all allegations concerning inappropriate or illegal behavior by our employees. We have in the past, and we will in the future, take action against any employee found to have violated agency policy or the law,” continued Steen.

    TABC conducts approximately 128,000 inspections of approximately 40,000 licensed locations statewide each year, looking for violations of the law. One of the agency’s key performance measures is to inspect at least 78.5% of licensed locations each year. During a 12-month period, typically about 96% of licensed locations in Texas are inspected at least once. Licensed locations that have complaints filed against them or previous public safety violations may be visited more frequently.

    Contact: Carolyn Beck, Public Information Officer, 512-206-3347

    Carolyn Beck
    Public Information Officer
    Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission
    http://www.tabc.state.tx.us
    512-206-3347
    carolyn.beck@tabc.state.tx.us

  21. BMF says

    I hope this kid pulls through. I must say though that people were going bat sh*t over words in DOMA brief that aren’t going to have a practical effect on anyone when this is the type stuff that really needs to inflame the community. Maybe we should refocus on basic right, i.e. not marriage, until we’ve got them.

  22. Marlin Bynum says

    Subject: Joint Statement from Sen. Wendy Davis and Rep Lon Burnam

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    CONTACT: Bernie Scheffler

    July 1, 2009 http://www.facebook.com/l/;512.463.0110

    Today State Senator Wendy R. Davis and State Representative Lon Burnam issued the following joint statement.

    From: State Senator Wendy Davis and State Representative Lon Burnam

    Re: Incident at Rainbow Lounge, 651 Jennings Ave., Fort Worth on June 28, 2009

    We want to provide you with an update of our response to concerns raised about the actions taken by City of Fort Worth Police officers and Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission agents on the early morning of June 28, 2009 at the Rainbow Lounge, which is located in the Fort Worth portion of the districts that we represent. We are deeply concerned about eye witness accounts of the events that occurred that morning and intend to activate all possible investigatory methods to learn the truth about those events.

    As part of learning as much information as possible about the incident at issue, we requested a meeting with Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission. As a consequence of that request, today we met with TABC representatives Joel Moreno, Chief of Field Operations, and Carolyn Beck, Public Information Officer. In that meeting, we made a very detailed request for information regarding the factual events that occurred at the Rainbow Lounge on both June 25, 2009, when TABC agents first conducted investigation activity at that location, and on June 28, 2009, when TABC agents returned to that location. Additionally, we requested detailed information with regard to the TABC agents’ compliance or non-compliance with procedures and policies of TABC as those are expressed in the TABC Enforcement Division Policy, Procedures & Forms manual.

    It is our hope that through a thorough investigation and analysis of the events that occurred at the Rainbow Lounge, particularly in the early morning hours of June 28, our community and those outside our community who have raised concerns, will be able to get the answers they need to their valid questions. Most importantly, Chad Gibson and his family, for whom we are deeply concerned, deserve answers.

    To that end, we intend to make a written request to TABC for answers to the questions raised in the meeting that we held today. Tomorrow, we will issue a joint letter detailing that request.

    Additionally, in order to assure that we and the community at large receive the answers deserved regarding the events of that morning, it is our hope that an objective, outside investigation be made which would examine internal investigation reports of both the Fort Worth Police Department and the TABC, as well as eye witness accounts. Through such an independent review, truth will be best assured. Our community deserves to know whether unacceptable actions were taken at the Rainbow Lounge, and, to the extent they did, that the persons responsible for those actions will be held accountable.

    ###

    We appreciate their work and concern on this issue, and we continue to ask for an immediate independent and public investigation of the raid on Rainbow Lounge.

  23. Jack says

    I wonder if I could get away with beating the next girl that hits on me within an inch of her life? I find it truly terrifying when that happens.

  24. Steve in Houston says

    It doesn’t matter who is responsible! TABC or the FWPD! Such attacks such as this does nothing but provoke the worse possible outcomes! I didn’t know anything about this until I saw it on Facebook through a friends site in NYC! Someone had posted a comment saying “BOYCOTT TEXAS”! All in Capital letters! I am a big defender of the State and if I could, would be in FW for the vigil. My heart and prayers go out to Chad and his family!

  25. Troy says

    This is the reason these fucktards have the reputation for being asshole sons of bitches, they earn it.

  26. Merlin says

    As a gay man who lived his entire life in Houston, Texas; I too have been a victim of police ignorance and violence. Texas has always been a militant state with police and sheriff departments making the law fit the outcome they desire. This is not a secret. The law in Texas and the Bible belt is driven by religious beliefs not the US law. Homosexuality is a sin therefore it is against the law punishable by death.
    In 2006 a young black man spray painted “Die Fag” on my garage door and fired several shots through my front door. No one was hurt and the paint washed off.
    The police arrived and made a report. Later that day, one of the burly white cops returned to my home alone and pulled me through my front door, slammed me up against the wall and informed me to never again call the police with an obvious false report. He proceeded to explain to me how it was clear that this was an attack by a jealous boyfriend since fags always lie.
    I left Texas and the US a few months later. I am now a resident of Australia and enjoy the recognition and protection of a truly free government. I have no desire to return. Australia does not allow guns or racist religions. The US was supposed to be founded on the separation of church and state.